Tuesday, July 07, 2009

An excercise in cultural insensitivity

APPARENTLY Indian Hindu's have gotten wind of a Winnipeg Sun article of all things where someone uses the term Vishnu without the proper reverence. They are, of course, demanding an apology.

Objecting to the sentence “Although Bollywood makes more movies, Hollywood is still the No.1 producer of non-Vishnu related cinema”, acclaimed Hindu statesman(tm) Rajan Zed, in a statement in Nevada (USA) today, said that Vishnu was highly revered deity and Hindus worship him. Use of word “Vishnu’ in this case was completely unwarranted. Careless use of this highly sacred term hurt the Hindu sentiments.

Rajan Zed, who is president of Universal Society of Hinduism, further said that Hindus were for free speech as much as anybody else if not more. Hindu tradition encouraged peaceful debates, won on their intellectual merit. But faith was something sacred and attempts at belittling it hurt the devotees.

Huh. Who knew! Apparently there are new limits to free speech. Using the name of a Hindu deity is not allowed for some reason that I don't understand. Go figure.

Hindu tradition encourages peaceful debates won on intellectual merit. UNLESS FAITH IS INVOLVED, THEN HOW DARE YOU ARGGRGGRRGG RGARGAAAAAAARRRRR"

Seems some Hindu's are angry about this use of a WORD that western society has no particular problem using. That is an actual descriptive term and not particularly harmful. Meanwhile, in India, there are Hindu's attacking Christians for the crime of "refusing to participate in a Hindu festival." Don't get me wrong, I don't particularly care for the message the Christians are spreading either, I'm a soulless monster and if there is a Hell, I'm probably going there no matter what, all the same its amusing how western society will fall all over themselves to appease religion no matter how stupid and inane their requests are. Not that I believe the Winnipeg Sun will or should bother. Meanwhile, in other countries, tolerance of other religions is poor or non-existent.

Should we stop being accepting of other religions? I don't think so. It annoys me when Atheists petition for the outlaw of religion altogether just as much as it annoys me when religions cry out for special status and attempt to control society. We don't have to sink to the level of other countries and outlaw or attack other religious views, but we musn't let religions co-opt societal norms. First you let religious leaders dictate the language you use, the next minute you have a caste system and its illegal to kill cows.

And of course, this does tie in to the horrible Mike Meyers movie "The Love Guru". Rajan Zed is apparently a huge proponent of censorship. This Zed guy probably googled hindu and movie, found the winnipeg sun article online, got incensed, and rushed out this article promoting himself as an "acclaimed Hindu statesman".

Ah well, so its much ado about nothing. At least I got a tl;dr blog post about it.

I guess I have nothing else to say about it. Until next time, I'm acclaimed Canadian statesman, Reed Solomon.

No comments: